Alliance Blog

Alliance Program Connects Corporate Partners and University Research

50 milliseconds. That is the communication delay between the surgeon and the surgical robot in telesurgery. 50 milliseconds of error seems imperceptibly small but it can cause a lot of harm during a surgery. Fortunately researchers at UC San Diego created a system that uses augmented reality renderings to predict events that could help surgeons overcome communication delays between the remote console and the surgical robot, reducing overshoot and increasing the safety of telesurgery.

Meanwhile, innovators at UCLA created gloves with sensors that can translate hand movements like sign language into voice with near-perfect accuracy.

So what is the next step for these technologies? How can surgeons implement augmented reality renderings to improve telesurgery? How can the deaf community access those gloves to communicate with those who do not know sign language?

This was the inspiration for the Alliance for SoCal Innovation’s program concept currently in development called the Strategic University Research Expo (SURE).

SURE is envisioned as an opportunity for corporate partners to get an early look at compelling innovative technologies developed at top Southern California universities. The universities in the Alliance’s network commit $7 billion a year to research and obtain over 500 patents per year. We will engage with our partners at the university technology transfer offices to curate virtual Demo Day expos of research projects that match our corporate partners’ innovation priorities, ranging from Augmented Reality applications in healthcare to cybersecurity. The Virtual Demo Day offers corporate partners the chance to interact with the teams, understand the technology, discuss possible future applications and build relationships.

Both corporate partners and universities benefit from the SURE network. Startups present a disruption threat to established companies and to remain competitive, corporates have to stay ahead in research and development. With the SURE program, they have early access to the licensing of novel intellectual property that have high commercial potential. They have the ability to underwrite and accelerate deeper exploration in priority research areas to stay ahead of their competition and more importantly, help bring important breakthroughs to the market. A partnership with the Alliance through SURE also gives corporations a platform to articulate future corporate technology needs.

On the other side of the equation, universities and their research teams benefit from having increased exposure to their research and the opportunity to commercialize their research. As a result, they can secure more funding or see their technology being utilized in places like hospitals or movie studios. Professors and student researchers can see the applicability of their technology and secure partnerships or licensing agreements.

There are many great examples of how such a connected network of corporates and research institutions can accelerate innovation. SURE is helping create a day where you can hear sign language or receive surgery from world-renowned surgeons across the globe.